I've been reflecting today on the most evil and tragic of human enterprises: War. Memorial Day should be a day of somber reflection on the terrible (and often avoidable) costs of war: All of the young people sent to fight and die, and the even greater number of noncombatants who also have their lives destroyed. 90% of all deaths in war are civilians. This ought to be their Memorial Day too.
As Tim O'Brien wrote in The Things They Carried, “If at the end of a war story you feel uplifted, or if you feel that some small bit of rectitude has been salvaged from the larger waste, then you have been made the victim of a very old and terrible lie. There is no rectitude whatsoever. There is no virtue.”